On February 2nd, our Brother Lt. Steven R. Floyd died in the line of duty at the James T. Vaughn Correctional Center in Smyrana, Delaware. From the reports, Lt. Floyd died a hero, warning his fellow officers that inmates had set up a trap. This last sacrifice is a testament to the kind of person he was and to the quality of the men and women who work as correctional officers across this country. Oregon AFSCME mourns with his family and his union brothers and sisters and hope that they are able to move on and cope with such as tragedy.
The prison riot and take-over that lead to this, is reminder to all correction officers of the dangers of this job and the necessity of making sure our voices are heard so that we can have safer working conditions. Cuts across the country to all levels of government have left many agencies, ours included, working with below what we see as safe staffing levels. For Corrections Employees that can mean life and death. We don’t know all the conditions that were at play at this facility but surely it must be a constant reminder of the vigilance needed to protect our members lives on the job.
The Correctional Officers Association of Delaware has set up a “gofundme” page (link below) for Lt. Floyd and if you are able to make a donation, it will surely be appreciated by his family.